Ancient statue unearthed in Rome.
Even after centuries of plunder by popes, princes and foreign invaders, archaeological treasures are still being unearthed in Romes historic centre. Ongoing excavations in Trajans Forum have just turned up a precious marble bust of the fourth century emperor, Constantine the Great. Measuring 60cm high the bust depicts the famous first Christian emperor of Rome following his victory over the usurper Maxentius at the Milvian Bridge in 312 AD. The find emerged as archaeologists were clearing out debris, thought to have been deposited during the Middle Ages, from the main sewer running through Trajans Forum. Experts believe the statue was deliberately thrown down into the sewer but are unsure as to why. One theory is that it was toppled into the sewer by rioting Romans in 326 AD at a time when the population was still largely pagan. The find is significant as it shows that late-Roman imperial art was placed in much earlier architectural complexes such as Trajans Forum.